League: Brown and McKendry to line up for Maori

New Kiwis Lewis Brown and Sam McKendry have been included in the New Zealand Maori rugby league side to play England at Mount Smart Stadium on Saturday night.

Brown (Warriors) , 24, and McKendry (Penrith), 21, along with Brisbane winger Antonio Winterstein, 22, were the new faces named in the Kiwis' Four Nations squad last week.

While they won't be making their test debuts for the Kiwis in the one-off game against Samoa in Saturday night's main game, Kiwis coach Stephen Kearney said playing for the Maori was a huge honour for them.

"They've been excited being part of the Kiwi camp this week and we're really keen for them to have some playing time," he said.

Maori coaches Richie Blackmore and Mark Horo have placed Brown and McKendry on the interchange bench.

Leading the side is 22-test veteran Clinton Toopi, 31, who's teamed in the centres with Australian international Timana Tahu. Tahu traces his Maori heritage through his late father.

NZ Maori team to play England: Kevin Locke, Sandor Earl, Timana Tahu, Clinton Toopi (captain), Kaine Manihera, AJ Taumataa, Rangi Chase, James Tamou, Aaron Heremaia, Russell Packer, Weller Hauraki, Justin Horo, Bodene Thompson.

Interchange: Jeremy Smith, Kevin Proctor, Sam McKendry, Lewis Brown.

- NZPA

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